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[jamsat-news:1833] ANS-236 AMSAT Weekly Bulletin


ANS is a free, weekly, news and information service of AMSAT North
America, The Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation. ANS reports on the
activities of a worldwide group of Amateur Radio operators who share an
active interest in designing, building, launching and communicating
through analog and digital Amateur Radio satellites.

In this edition:
* Russian Space Agency Gets 100 Million Dollar Budget Boost
* ESA uses SMART Propulsion
* Nigeria to Launch own Satellite Next Month
* Japan to Launch 18 Satellites

SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-236.01
Russian Space Agency Gets 100 Million Dollar Budget Boost

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 236.01 From AMSAT HQ

SILVER SPRING, MD.  August 24, 2003
BID: $ANS-236.01

Russia is to boost its space budget by some three billion rubles (100
million dollars) next year, the head of the Russian Space Agency said

The additional funds, a supplement to Russia's 2004 budget, "mean we
will be able to actively develop the International Space Station
project," he said, as quoted by the Interfax-AVN news agency.

The extra money will also enable Russia to increase the number of its
satellite launches for communications and scientific purposes.

According to the Russian Space Forces, the space wing of Russia's armed
forces, around 100 Russian satellites are currently in orbit,
including 60 of military application.

Since the February 1 Columbia space shuttle disaster in which US
astronauts died, triggering the suspension by NASA, the US space
agency, of its shuttle flights, the burden of servicing the ISS has
fallen entirely on Russia.

The Russian finance ministry presented the government with its draft
2004 budget earlier this month.

The draft will be given three readings in parliament before being
passed into law before legislative elections scheduled for December.

[ANS thanks Space Daily for the above information.]


SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-236.02
ESA uses SMART Propulsion

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 236.02 From AMSAT HQ

SILVER SPRING, MD.  August 24, 2003
BID: $ANS-236.02

Europe's first probe to the Moon, SMART-1, is about to begin a unique
journey that will take it into orbit around our closest neighbour,
powered only by an ion engine which Europe will be testing for the
first time as main spacecraft propulsion.

The European Space Agency's SMART-1 spacecraft was delivered to Kourou,
French Guiana, on July 15 and is currently being prepared for launch
atop an Ariane 5 during the night from August 28 to 29. The launch
window will open at 20:04 local time (01:04 on August 29 morning CEST)
and will remain open for 26 minutes.

SMART-1's ion engine will be used to accelerate the probe and raise its
orbit until it reaches the vicinity of the Moon, some 350,000 to
400,000 km from Earth. Then, following gravity assists from a series of
lunar swingbys in late September, late October and late November 2004,
SMART-1 will be 'captured' by the Moon's gravity in December 2004 and
will begin using its engine to slow down and reduce the altitude of its
lunar orbit.

As ESA's first Small Mission for Advanced Research in Technology, it is
primarily designed to demonstrate innovative and key technologies for
future deep space science missions. However, once it has arrived at its
destination, it will also perform an unprecedented scientific study of
the Moon. SMART-1 is a very small spacecraft (measuring just one cubic
metre). Its solar arrays, spanning 14 metres, will deliver 1.9 kW of
power, about 75% of which will be used for the probe's 'solar electric'
propulsion system.

In its role as technological demonstrator, SMART-1's primary goal is to
test this new solar electric propulsion system. This is a form of
continuous low-thrust engine that uses electricity derived from solar
panels to produce a beam of charged particles that pushes the
spacecraft forward. Such engines are commonly called ion engines, and
engineers consider them essential for future, long-range space
missions. SMART-1 will also test miniaturised spacecraft equipment and
instruments, a navigation system that, in the future, will allow
spacecraft to autonomously navigate through the solar system, and in
addition to a new short-wavelength communication system, a space
communication technique by means of which SMART-1 will try to establish
a link with the Earth using a laser beam.

Once it enters into a near-polar orbit around the Moon in January 2005,
SMART-1 will also become a science platform for lunar observation.
SMART-1 will search for signs of water-ice in craters near the Moon's
poles, provide data to shed light on the still uncertain origin of the
Moon, and reconstruct its evolution by mapping its topography and the
surface distribution of minerals and key chemical elements.

SMART-1 will be the second ESA-led planetary mission to be launched in
2003 after Mars Express in June.

[ANS thanks European Space Agency for the above information.]


SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-236.03
Nigeria to Launch own Satellite Next Month

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 236.03 From AMSAT HQ

SILVER SPRING, MD.  August 24, 2003
BID: $ANS-236.03

Nigeria will next month launch its own satellite, to be used for
surveillance and data gathering, Nigeria's Science and Technology
minister said Wednesday.

The remote sensing satellite will be launched in Russia but mission
control and ground station monitoring will be based in Abuja.

He said a deal for the 13-million-dollar project was sealed in November
2000, adding that 15 Nigerian engineers and scientists had been trained
to handle it.

[ANS thanks Space Daily for the above information.]


SB SAT @ AMSAT $ANS-236.04
Japan to Launch 18 Satellites

AMSAT News Service Bulletin 236.04 From AMSAT HQ
SILVER SPRING, MD.  August 24, 2003

BID: $ANS-236.04

Japan plans to launch 18 earth orbiters, including four spy satellites,
through 2007 under a newly arrayed schedule of rockets shots, an
official says.

The first of the spy satellites is scheduled for launch next month,
with others slated for 2004, 2005 and 2006.

The schedule forms the basis for space exploration policy after the
nation's three aerospace agencies merge this October into the Japan
Aerospace Exploration Agency, said the deputy director of space
development at the ministry of science and education.

Among the planned missions: A moon observation satellite, a sun
observation satellite, two star observation satellites, a broadband
Internet satellite, a greenhouse gas monitoring satellite, a weather
satellite and an orbiter to monitor rainfall.

[ANS thanks Florida Today for the above information.]


ANS is released worldwide via the AMSAT ANS e-mail reflector and a live
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This week's ANS Editor:
Scott Lindsey-Stevens, N3ASA

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